I am a sucker for a new vegetable. Whenever I visit markets, I am on the hunt for new and different produce, and a recent trip to a farm stand in rural New Jersey did not disappoint.
I saw a pile of pale green, eggplant-shaped vegetables labeled “Magda Squash.” They were described — quite accurately, as it happened — by the farmer as “similar to zucchini but with a slightly nutty flavor.” The varietal is known as a Middle Eastern and Mediterranean crop and is often served stuffed.
I decided to toss the squash in olive oil, salt and pepper and roast it, figuring that I wanted to experience the taste and texture before messing around with different preparations. It worked well and complemented our barbecued chicken and corn dinner nicely.
Like its cousin the zucchini, Magda squash can be used in any way — grilled, sautéed, baked, stuffed. Its relatively mild flavor offers a blank canvas, so it is quite versatile. Leftovers can be used in a salad the following day.
Roasted Magda Squash
2 Magda squash, cut in bite-sized chunks
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt (or to taste)
Generous sprinkling of fresh cracked pepper
Heat your oven to 375 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking tray with parchment.
Place the squash pieces in a single layer in the pan, drizzle them with oil and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast the squash in the oven for 45 minutes or until the squash is soft and beginning to brown.
Serve hot or at room temperature.